Written by Bill Wynne • Updated Nov 25, 2021
43 Ways to burn calories throughout the day
You might think that the only way to burn calories is to sweat them out in the gym. But that's not true.
In fact, the majority of the calories you burn in a day come from all the movements you do throughout the day, that you don't necessarily think about it. So by being a little more aware of how to incorporate more of these movements, you can increase your calorie expenditure by an extra 200-800 calories!
Read this article for 43 ways to burn more calories throughout the day. How many can you squeeze into your day?
First things first ☝🏼
Knowing what your day has in store is crucial for working out where or when you could boost your activity levels. Really familiarise yourself with your schedule. Plan ahead and don’t be afraid to think (quite literally) on your feet! It’s all about finding the combination which works for you.
Remember – the aim isn't to burn yourself out! It's neither going to benefit you or your workouts. That's why a smartwatch with a calorie-tracker can be a great easily monitor how many calories you burn.
Get up and go: the morning routine ⏰
For a lot of us, starting the day as you intend to go on can be a dopamine boost! None of us feel that great the moment the alarm rings, but why not get off on the right foot to shake that early morning fogginess?
1. Stretch! You can even do a few hamstring stretches in bed before even lifting your head from the pillow…
2. Have a shower instead of a bath
3. Stand up while making your breakfast or doing your makeup
4. Iron your shirt. Bonus: You have a fresh ironed shirt for the day
5. Do a final run-round to check for closed windows and switch-offs before leaving
Yes, being on your feet in the morning is great, but remember that it’s always worth sitting down to enjoy your breakfast in comfort; your first nutrition hit is what’s going to help you nail your active day ahead.
Travelling tips 🚘
Obviously, provided you’ve got a safe route at a safe time, you can always change the way you get from home to school or work. But why stop there?
6. Walk, run, cycle to work instead of taking public transport
7. Walk one bus stop ahead or jump off a stop early coming home
8. Stand up in the bus and avoid going to the first possible seat
9. Use the stairs at the station in your office building
10. Aim for a brisker pace. Act like you're running late and set a personal best
11. Park that little bit further away. You get a free parking space AND extra steps. Win-win!
12. Walk and talk with the other parents at your kids playground
13. Volunteer to be a playground monitor first thing
💡 Top tip: one at a time tasking
If there’s one thing to keep in mind throughout the day, don’t multi-task! Make your to-do list last, whether it’s photocopying one at a time or not throwing everything in the washing basket at once, this is the one time you don’t want to streamline.
Use your indoor space 🏠
If you’re indoors for most of the day, this is where it gets tricky – but we’re not going to let that stop you! There are so many ways to make your surroundings work for you.
If you’re at home…
14. Swap slippers for comfy trainers. They will definitely make you feel more active and move more
15. Find any excuse to be up and downstairs – even to pick up mail!
16. Meet deliveries downstairs if you’re in an apartment (take the lift if it’s heavy, obviously)
17. Get stuck in with cleaning – different chores target different muscles
18. Hang washing out on the line. It's a great workout
19. Pack and unpack home gym equipment every time you use it
And if you’re chained to the desk…
20. Ditch the lift, take the stairs, especially if your office is spread across floors
21. Keep on your toes when taking phone calls
22. Offer to help moving and carrying things around (bonus: they’ll owe you one)
23. Whip out the workout playlist to give you that urge to move throughout the day
24. Set hourly reminders on your phone or computer to get out the chair
25. Even chewing gum burns calories! And deters you from that extra snack…
Optimise your free-time outdoors 🌳
The obvious recommendation for your free time is to ‘go for a walk', but that isn’t always practical or exciting. Find ways to get your dog, friends or family involved and make calorie-kicking fun.
Plus, making plans holds you accountable.
26. Take your dog for an extra walk, or offer to walk someone else’s
27. Find something new to play at the park with the kids
28. Meet friends outdoors where possible – you might even tempt them with frisbee
29. Try your hand at gardening and growing vegetables, it’s great for getting passionate about healthy eating too
30. Play active games indoors, whether it’s hide and seek or a squeaky toy
31. Sit and stretch out on the floor with the kids when you’re playing
32. Watch something adrenaline-inducing, jump scares burn calories!
The best part is, once you’ve hit your calorie targets, you get to share them with everyone who’s been involved too.
Food hacks 🍝
While we’re not strictly on the subject of diet here, there’s plenty of passive ways to give your metabolism a boost throughout the day when it comes to eating!
33. Go out to get lunch, and not just from over the road
34. Find somewhere new to sit and eat outdoors on your lunch break
35. Look at foods which combine high-energy with low-calorie, think veggies and beans
36. Don’t order online, supermarkets are designed for doing laps!
37. Vary where you shop. Walking to different independent stores will also give you some variety
38. Go spicy with food – they can raise how many calories you burn while resting
Pillow talk: sleep matters 😴
You can’t get more passive than this. Once you’ve wound down from your active day, don’t skimp on the recommended 7-9 hours sleep a night. You’re not only repairing and recharging the body but burning calories too.
Here are a few ways to optimise your sleep:
39. Set a strict bedtime like someone would for their children
40. Make sure you’ve got a comfortable mattress
41. Choose a quilt that’s appropriate for the time of year
42. Buy blackout curtains if you’re easily disturbed
43. Try earplugs (provided you can still hear your alarm!)
There’s plenty of ways to steadily burn calories even when you’re not at the gym or powering away on the yoga mat – it’s all about finding the right combination for you.
Keep in mind the key points:
When possible, walk and be outdoors with your loved ones
Work with the space you have
Remember: multi-tasking isn’t your friend here!
Eat and shop with your metabolism in mind
Have a consistent sleep pattern to get yourself ready for a new day
If you're already maxed out on daily activities and think it's time to give your actual workouts a boost, the trainn app is perfect for you! Enjoy efficient and sweaty workouts that optimise your time in the gym and max out the calorie burn.
Time to get moving 😊
Hi, I'm Sarah Louise 👋🏼
I am one of the personal trainers on trainn, as well as the founder & creator of it all.
My aim is to take you on a personalised fitness journey to a body you love and a lifestyle you can maintain. Real advice. Real results.
After coaching thousands of clients for nearly a decade and gathering lots of experience, I have designed methods that are proven to make your results stick with you forever.
Take your fitness to the next level, regain confidence and create a consistent routine through personalised workouts, weekly goals, healthy habits & expert advice. All unique to you.
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